10 October 2010


Inquiring minds have inquired - no, wait, the mouths associated with the inquiring minds have inquired - no, actually, it was the fingers attached to the hands associated with the inquiring minds... Aw, heck. Some folks 'as wanted to know what's with this "Teaist" thing down there in my side bar. Let me enlighten you.

Teaism is a religious persuasion not unlike Theism or Deism. The most basic tenet of its beliefs is that "A Good Cuppa Cures All Ills." But actually, because tea-drinking encourages moderation and tolerance, we don't insist on our members subscribing to this doctrine verbatim. If you are more comfortable with stating that "A Good Cuppa Is a Fair Beginning to Making One Feel Somewhat Better About a Considerable Number Of Ills," that's good enough. You're in. As long as you appreciate a cuppa, we welcome you to our ranks.

Teaism is a religion of diversity. Of course it began with the common tea plant, Camellia Sinensis, sipped as good ol' English Breakfast, Orange Pekoe (which, incidentally, has nothing more to do with the citrus fruit than that they're both named for the Dutch Royal house of Oranje- or maybe the house for the fruit, and the tea after the house, or the other way round), or any other number of "plain blacks". But there the diversity begins. There are so many varieties of even just black tea (ever tried Darjeeling, the "champagne of teas"?), never mind the ways to drink it. With sugar or without, with milk, with cream, with lemon (though not all at once- my brother tried that once when we were kids; he got banned to the next room while finishing up the resulting revoltingly curdled mess, rather like slimy, stringy cottage cheese floating in the tea. Not pretty.). Then there's green tea, white tea, oolong- all of those still from the same plant, just different processing techniques. All delicious brewed up in the cup. And then we get into what Hercule Poirot calls "tisane", which roughly translates into any tea that's not made from the camellia sinensis plant. My favourite would be peppermint, homegrown if I can get it- it's got more bite that way than the stuff in the tea bags. Chamomile is a lovely soother. Rosehip has a great tang, almost like fruit juice. And I won't even begin to list the varieties that are purely medicinal; we'd still be here tomorrow.

Incidentally, my daily brew of choice, gunpowder green, does not, in spite of its name, encourage violence. In vino veritas, in camelliam sinensis pacem. May the brew be with you.


  1. Thanks for the chuckle, Angelika! Oh, what a gift you have for writing. Lovely to know you're here and I can enjoy your witty words once again.

    PS. I know now that I am a Teaist. I've learned something new today.... ;o)

  2. Oh, I'm so glad to know another fellow teaist! I knew we were kindred spirits. :)